fustian was our Word of the Day on 01/19/2012. Hear the podcast!
Theme music by Joshua Stamper ©2006 New Jerusalem Music/ASCAP
Examples of fustian in a Sentence
a speech awash in old-fashioned fustian and bereft of all substance
Did You Know?
Fustian has been used in English for a kind of cloth since the 13th century, but it didn't acquire its high-flown sense until at least three centuries later. One of the earliest known uses of the "pretentious writing or speech" sense occurs in Christopher Marlowe's play Doctor Faustus when Wagner says, "Let thy left eye be diametarily [sic] fixed upon my right heel, with quasi vestigiis nostris insistere," and the clown replies, "God forgive me, he speaks Dutch fustian." The precise origins of the word fustian aren't clear. English picked it up from Anglo-French, which adopted it from Medieval Latin, but its roots beyond that point are a subject of some dispute.
Seen and Heard
What made you want to look up fustian? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).